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The Relevancy of Photo Prints Today

Who needs printed photos when you have social media? These apps are the ultimate refrigerator magnets, but instead of retaining just a few pictures of your life, they let you scroll through years of images with a flick of your thumb no matter where you are. Every image is organized by date and album for easy retrieval, meaning that there’s almost no reason to print images, ever.

Yet, I can count on numerous occasions, when after a natural disaster occurred (wind, tornados, hurricanes floods etc.), the victims being interviewed about their personal loss(es). What is and remains consistent in their discussion is the fact that they don’t usually lament the loss of their high-end electronics, damage to their homes etc., but instead weep the loss of their family photo albums, wedding photos, graduation photos etc.

Even more poignant are the numerous scenes taken of families besides their destroyed possessions clutching tightly and close to their chest, a photo album of their family’s history/accomplishments which somehow survived nature’s onslaught.

So why do photographic prints evoke such a strong response from someone? The answer, I think, is that they cared enough to ensure that their family’s momentous events were printed and displayed in a safe environment. Sometime, in their past, a photographer put on paper a treasured personal moment for their future family generations to view and more importantly—- to remember.

Remember that time has a way of erasing details, and that events that meant so much at the time of the occasion disappears so quickly from our thoughts. When someone tries to recall past events and/or people that made such a difference in their life, they may only see indistinct silhouettes.

No matter how advanced our cloud-based apps become or how fancy our smartphones are, they’ll never fully replace a printed page. Digital versions are just that — bits and bytes of data gathered together on screens that require power and can be easily corrupted. So, think seriously about printing what you want to preserve. If you don’t think photos are important now, wait until they are all you have left.

SOURCES

Nathan Chandler “Is printing still relevant?” 26 August 2015.
HowStuffWorks.com. <https://computer.howstuffworks.com/is-printing-still-relevant.htm> 26 March 2019

 

MISSY MWAC.  “If You Don’t Think Photos Are Important, Wait Until They Are All You Have Left” March 19, 2015

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